1. Take a childbirth class.
2. Know the breastfeeding basics.
3. Get a crib and set up the nursery.
4. Select birth announcements and set up draft.
5. Freeze some meals or round up takeout menus.
6. Install a carseat.
7. Wash crib sheets and baby clothes with baby friendly detergent.
8. Make a labor playlist.
9. Choose a Pediatrician.
10. Pack your hospital bag with:
a. Insurance info, hospital forms and birth plan (if you have one)
b. 2-3 pairs of warm, nonskid socks that can get ruined (for walking the halls before and after labor)
c. A warm robe or sweater you don’t mind sacrificing to the cause
d. 2 maternity bras — no underwire — and nursing pads (whether or not you plan to nurse, you’ll appreciate the support and leak-protection)
e. Lip balm (hospitals are very dry)
f. Toiletries and personal items — hairbrush, toothbrush, toothpaste, deodorant, face wash, makeup (as if), shampoo, conditioner, lotion, contact lens case and solution (remember, travel-sized products are your friends)
h. Headband or ponytail holder (avoid clips — they’ll probably poke you)
I. Sugar-free hard candy or lozenges to keep your mouth moist during labor (candy with sugar will make you thirsty)
j. Pen and paper
k. Lots of change for the vending machines and non-perishable snacks (you’ll probably be hungry after labor, and the hospital cafeteria could be closed)
l. Cell phone and charger, phone numbers of people to call after birth, prepaid calling card (if your hospital doesn’t allow cell phones)
m. Camera, film or extra memory card, battery or charger
n. A gym bag packed with a change of clothes and basic hygiene products for your partner